Findings: Inaccessible content at Vancouver2010.com and CTVOlympics.ca

17 03 2010

Accessibility advocate, Joe Clark, examined 2 Paralympic Winter Games sites, Vancouver2010.com and CTVOlympics.ca and found that both failed to meet basic accessibility standards. It is sadly ironic that the Winter Paralympic Games, which seeks to include people of all abilities and disabilities, have websites which are inaccessible to the very community which supports it.

We are not talking about just missing the mark and failing the highest level of web accessibility (Level AAA). These sites have actually failed to comply with the lowest basic level of accessibility.

Some of the accessibility issues found were:

  • Dozens of images do not have alternative text
  • Sites are not keyboard operable 
  • Flash content is not accessible
  • Videos are not captioned 

This is a lawsuit waiting to happen. In 1999, Bruce Maguire lodged a complaint against the Sydney Olympic Games official website because it was inaccessible to blind people and was awarded AUD $20,000.

Implementing an accessible site is not difficult. Including simple things like alternative text on images will improve the lives of many in more ways than you know, not to mention the SEO benefits of doing so.

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